Power restored after thousands of Lake Worth Utility customers impacted overnight

Overhead wire breaks loose, causes fire

LAKE WORTH, Fla. - Thousands of Lake Worth Utilities customers have power again Tuesday morning after a big overnight outage impacted the city. 

“It was wicked hot. I was sweating," said Shelah Dufault. "It was kind of a miserable feeling.”

Lake Worth officials said it brought the Lake Worth power plant online to help as thousands of people dealt with the outage.

"Put the candles out. We had a couple patrons. They stayed," stayed Krishna Vensel, of CJ's Island Grill. "It might’ve been a little bit warm, but the beer is super cold.”

The city said a problem occurred at a station in Hypoluxo, causing about 25,000 customers to lose their power.

"Computers were out," Vensel said, of the condition of the restaurant in the morning. "We weren’t able to clean the way we normally clean at night, but I’m taking care of that now in between the customers."

By 6:47 a.m. all customers, including Palm Beach State College and area schools, had power restored. 

According to a written statement from Lake Worth public information officer Ben Kerr, an overhead wire used to divert lightning broke loose and made contact with energized high voltage equipment at the main point of delivery for Lake Worth Electric Utilities external power supply.

This caused a fire, which then caused a system-wide outage.

To provide intermediary power, Kerr said the Lake Worth Municipal Power Plant was brought on line at 11:40 p.m.

By 4:30 a.m. Tuesday, Kerr said the plant achieved its maximum power generation providing for 19,600 customers.

Staff were able to repair and restore the external power supply at 6:14 a.m, and all customer power was restored at 6:47 a.m. The power plant came off line at 7 a.m.

Kerr said the initial cause of the overhead wire breakage has yet to be determined, but the incident will be investigated.

Lake Worth Electric Utilities said they wanted to thank all customers for their patience and understanding during the outage.

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